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Enhancing Your Scholarly Profile Workshop: Citations and Shares Tracking Instructions

Research guide created for workshop on enhancing scholarly profiles


Citations are the “coin of the realm” to track scholarly impact, not only for your articles but for your research data, too. You can get citation alerts using the Google Scholar Profile you set up on Day 1.

You can keep a close eye on what articles are automatically added to your profile by signing up for alerts and manually removing any incorrect additions that appear. You can also receive alerts when someone else cites your work.

Step 1: Google Scholar Notifications and Alerts

Here’s how to sign up for notifications:

  1. Click the “Follow” button at the top of your profile
  2. To be notified when Google Scholar has automatically added a publication to your profile, select “New articles in my profile” 
  3. To be notified when someone else has cited your work, select "New articles in my profile"
  4. To find out about recommended articles in your field and area of research, select "Recommended articles"
  5. Enter your email address, and click “Done.”

You can also receive general alerts through email when your name, institution, articles, or other relevant keywords are mentioned in scholarship.

  1. Click the hamburger icon for the general menu on the far left of your profile: Screenshot of Main Menu location on Google Scholar

  2. Select "Alerts"
  3. Click "Create Alert" to add new text strings. These can be your name, your name and your institution's name, names of articles, or anything else you can think of
  4. Enter your email address
  5. Select how many results you wish to receive at a time
  6. When finished, click "Create Alert"
  7. You'll now see a list of all of your alerts

Screenshot of Google Scholar Alerts


With alerts set for Google Scholar, you’ll now be notified when your work is cited in many, many publications worldwide! But citations only capture a very specific form of scholarly impact. How do we learn about other uses of your articles?

Step 2: Page views & downloads

How many people are reading your work? While you can’t be certain that article page views and full-text downloads mean people are reading your articles, many researchers still find these measures to be a good proxy.

Different publishers make different metrics available--some may show you page views and article downloads, while others may only show you one or the other. Some make this information publicly available:

Screenshot of article views on Taylor & Francis website


While others may require you to login through their author portal:


EliScholar Usage Reports for Elizabeth Joan Kelly's "Altmetrics and Archives"

For many publishers, these metrics are only available on their websites. Some pioneering publishers go one step further, sending you an email when you’ve got new page views and downloads on their site.

Step 3: Publisher notifications

In addition to displaying page views and downloads on their websites, publishers like PeerJ and Frontiers send notification emails as a service to their authors. Not a PeerJ or Frontiers author? Contact your publisher to find out if they offer notifications for metrics related to articles you’ve published.

If you are a PeerJ or Frontiers author, here are some pointers:

If you’re a PeerJ author, you should receive notification emails by default once your article is published. But if you want to check if your notifications are enabled, sign into, and click your name in the upper right hand corner. Select “Settings.” Choose “Notification Settings” on the left navigation bar, and then select the “Summary” tab. You can then choose to receive daily or weekly summary emails for articles you’re following.

In Frontiers journals, it works like this: once logged in, click the arrow next to your name on the upper left-hand side and select “Settings.” On the left-hand nav bar, choose “Messages,” and under the “Other emails” section, check the box next to “Frontiers monthly impact digest.”

Both publishers aggregate activity for all of the publications you’ve published with them, so no need to worry about multiple emails crowding your inbox at once.

Box 4: Create an ImpactStory Profile

What you need now is a single place to view your metrics (and the underlying qualitative data). You also need a way to share your metrics with others. That’s where Impactstory comes in.

Impactstory is a non-profit webapp that compiles data from across the Web on how often (and by whom) your research is being shared, saved, discussed, cited and more. They automate much of the work of collecting impact metrics, so you don’t have to. And they provide rich, contextualized, open metrics alongside the underlying data, so you can learn a lot in one place (and reuse most of the metrics however you want). Checkout a sample profile here, or follow the steps below to get started!

  1. Go to to claim your profile. You do need a Twitter account to signup. ImpactStory signup screenshot
  2. Next you will need to sync your profile with your ORCID ID--that's how ImpactStory finds your publications. 
  3. After you've synced with your ORCID ID, you'll be greeted with a dashboard congratulating you on your reach! Click through the menus at the top for more information on your achivementsScreenshot of ImpactStory profile for Ethan White
  4. If not all of your publications are listed, go to the Publications menu and select "Add Publications" to use the Scopus ORCID importer wizard. Note that if your publications are listed in your ORCID ID profile, they won't be imported into ImpactStory.
  5. If you've newly added publications to your ORCID ID profile and they're not showing up, click the gear icon at the top right corner of your profile, and click "Sync with my ORCID now." ImpactStory sync with ORCID screenshot